Mixed Reviews for "Asia on Argyle" Sign

New sign is just one element of overall rebranding plan

By Sharon Wright
|  Friday, Apr 5, 2013  |  Updated 12:36 PM CDT
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The alderman says a new sign on Argyle Street was erected to reflect the strong Asian influence in the area, but nearly 100 people have filed complaints with the city. Sharon Wright reports.

The alderman says a new sign on Argyle Street was erected to reflect the strong Asian influence in the area, but nearly 100 people have filed complaints with the city. Sharon Wright reports.

One aspect of a years-long plan to revitalize a portion of Argyle Street is being met with mixed reviews.

Online critics have been especially vocal in decrying the new "Asia on Argyle" sign that was erected on the Chicago Transit Authority's Argyle stop on the Red Line last week.

"Please tell me this is temporary," reads one comment on the 48th Ward's Facebook page.

Others were more pointed:

"red and green? looks like santa's fire station"
"this looks terrible"
"THAT IS HIDEOUS!"
"That's an eyesore"

A 2008 report -- Discover Asia on Argyle -- intended to "promote Argyle Street through signage and design features." The new sign is just one element of that overall plan currently being implemented, Ald. Harry Osterman explained.

"[We've been] working with the local businesses and the local residents to have an identifier that would kind of highlight the Asian diversity with the business community here and highlight this as a destination point," he said.

But while many online expressed outrage, those approached by NBC Chicago on Monday embraced the new signage and what it will mean for the community.

"I really like it. I think it will do a positive impact on this street and on the business community," said businessman Marc Vuong.

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